More passengers than ever before are visiting Great Britain through the country’s 52 cruise ports. 

Figures released today by CruiseBritain show that in 2012 more than 100 ships visited the UK.  And these ships brought a record 723,000 passengers on day calls, a rise of 11 percent.

2012 also saw 962,000 passengers begin their cruise at a UK port, a 10 percent increase on 2011, with 84 percent of passengers being British.

47 different cruise lines tied up in a UK port in 2012 with passengers taking day trips to a variety of destinations across the country. Britain’s island geography makes Round Britain cruises an unusual and unique itinerary option and allows visitors to explore coasts, castles, cities and countryside in one easy visit.

Plus, Britain’s geographical proximity to complementary countries offers additional choice for a wide range of lines and ships. From expedition cruises to boutique ships, British-focussed to German, North American, French and Spanish-focussed lines, Britain is growing in appeal.

"‘The growth in both cruise ship visits and passenger numbers is a continued testament to Britain’s value as a cruise destination," commented Kate O’Hara, Chair CruiseBritain. 

"Since 2004, we have seen the number of visiting passengers more than double and the number of different cruise ships calling has gone from 76 to 105, a rise of 38 percent. The uniqueness of Round Britain cruises together with our diverse regional history, heritage, culture and scenery ensure our continued success. Britain’s destinations deliver an excellent passenger experience and we all work towards delivering a smooth operation for the cruise lines," added O’Hara.